In an economy where financing is essential for many of the greater necessities in life—a home, a car, credit cards—your credit score is more important than ever. One slight misrepresentation or credit score error on your report could be detrimental to your way of living.
With free credit monitoring apps becoming widely available, it’s easier than ever for us to be notified when a false mark comes across our report. But the unfortunate reality is that a credit score error could lead to problems for months or even years if left unnoticed. And even when you do notice it, the erroneous mark won’t come right off of your report.
There are several steps you need to take if you see this false derogatory mark on your report. Without these steps you risk being unable to buy important things you need in life—such as that dream home you have been saving for.
What to Do If You See A Credit Score Error
There are many great sites and even free options for those looking to monitor their score. These sites will notify you when a derogatory mark has hit your score and can also calculate your scores based on the information in your report.
Once you notice a credit score error, the first thing you should do is reach out to an experienced attorney to help with the removal process. One false, derogatory mark on your report could be the difference in an approval or rejection for a loan, employment opportunities, and even car insurance premiums.
The next step will be going through the dispute process, which can get quite lengthy. Unfortunately, even a credit score error on someone else’s behalf takes some time to be removed and can become a nightmare for even the most skilled consumers.
How Does A Credit Dispute Work?
A great resource for seeing and disputing derogatory marks on your credit score is annualcreditreport.com. This site gives you access to your true credit report for free once per year. Should you choose to have access to this more than once per year, the three major reporting companies have options for you.
On these credit reports, each derogatory mark has an area where you can file a dispute, either online or via mail. Whichever method you choose to dispute, you will need to write a full description of what you want removed and why you are disputing this mark.
Next, you will have to reach out to the lender or company responsible for placing the mark on your report since they will need to be the ones to determine whether or not the listing can be removed.
Then comes the waiting game. The credit bureaus will respond within 30 days to let you know whether the lender or company who filed the report has answered and decided whether or not this is yours. If they report back that the lender claims this is yours and it truly isn’t, the cycle must begin again.
What Happens When The Error Is Not Corrected?
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is a federal law that regulates the collection of consumers’ credit information and access to their credit reports; it also gives consumers an independent cause of action for errors on their credit report.
You do not need to beg the credit reporting agencies to correct errors on your report or spend countless hours on the phone with a call center employee. This will simply result in many days of needless frustration. The credit agencies have 30 days to validate and investigate once you notify them of the error. If the error is not removed you may have a cause of action: for your damages, costs and attorney fees.
Under the FCRA, you can be compensated and your credit corrected. Do not lose more precious time and aggravation pleading for help—sue the credit agency instead. Take affirmative steps to correct the damage to your credit history and hire an experienced attorney to advocate for you.
At Amador & Cuellar, we have worked with many clients to resolve credit report errors and have seen the relief on their faces when the reports are corrected, and lives are made whole.
Common examples of cases under the FCRA
Mixed your identity with a family member;
Mixed your identity with a stranger with a similar name or social security number;
Identity theft disputes on your credit report;
Failed criminal background check due to error;
Student loans reporting incorrectly;
Modifications of loans reporting as delinquent,
Medical bills not owed or already paid reporting on your credit.
If you’re dealing with a false derogatory mark on your report, give us a call today.
Let Amador & Cuellar help you get your score back to where it needs to be and get you rightfully compensated for your damages.